Swedish Parliament Speaker: world must not forget the Genocide against the Tutsi

Speaker of Swedish Parliament Andreas Norlén addresses participants at the event in Stockholm. Courtesy.

The Speaker of the Parliament of Sweden, Andreas Norlén, on Wednesday warned the international community that atrocities such as the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi could happen anywhere if appropriate lessons were not learned from Rwanda.

“If the veneer of civilization can crack in [Rwanda], it can also crack here. Individuals who perpetrated the genocide were people like us’, Norlén said at the commemoration of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi in Stockholm.

The ceremony was preceded by a walk to remember attended by hundreds led by the Swedish Minister for Foreign Affairs, Margot Wallström, and Ambassador Christine Nkulikiyinka, Rwanda’s envoy to Sweden and other Nordic Countries.

Speaking at the commemoration ceremony, Wallström condemned the failure of the international community during the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.

The Walk to Remember in Stockholm.

“Long before 1994, the international community pledged ‘Never Again’ but the international community stood by as the Genocide against the Tutsi happened,” said Wallström.

On her part, Amb. Christine Nkulikiyinka warned against denial and trivialisation of the Genocide against the Tutsi. She said that such practices, coupled with indifference, were not only a threat to Rwanda but to all countries across the world.

“We should all recognise that one of the biggest social problems of our time is the existence of politics that seek to divide people along ethnic, racial, or religious lines, and justify the inhumane and unjust treatment of others due to biological, social or cultural characteristics,” said Nkulikiyinka.

The commemoration of the Genocide against the Tutsi and the walk to remember in Stockholm on Wednesday were organised by the Embassy and they followed a commemoration and walk to remember held on Sunday co-organised with the Rwandan community in Sweden.

Several commemoration events are scheduled this month in cities across the Nordics.